How to grow your fitness business

How to grow your fitness business

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How to grow your fitness business

By Nicolay Kreidler


As we all know, Australia’s fitness industry is growing; rising health consciousness among society is fuelling consumer spending with increasingly higher levels of discretionary income used for weight-loss, health and wellness programs.

Unfortunately only a fraction of fitness industry professionals last long enough to become established experts. Statistically four years into the profession burnout and financial struggles often lead to an untimely exit. And here’s why: most fitness professionals are on a ‘dollars per hour’ schedule and this is where the problem lies. If you are selling your time for money the only way to increase your income is to work more. This strategy sooner or later leads to burnout.

In a ‘dollars per hour’ business your earning potential has a ceiling. Earning hours are where you focus on clients and your hourly rate is dictated by your competition. There are only so many hours a week to work. To stay on top of your game, you also need to put time into your own training, market yourself and have a healthy work-life balance.

As coaches, trainers and facilitators we are all in the same boat. But if you are struggling with how to grow your fitness business, here a key few ways I recommend:


Qualify yourself to set yourself apart

Set yourself apart for a competitive edge and much more visibility by positioning yourself as an expert. Qualifying means adding certifications to your portfolio that add skills and techniques to your toolbox. These will allow you to offer more value to your clients and accelerate their experience and success rate.  This isn’t the same as collecting certificates, though; your differentiation will be based on the complementary knowledge base you can offer.


Think outside the traditional toolbox

Explore techniques that allow you to address the whole mind-body-spirit continuum. Developing your understanding and experience with different tools and techniques will allow you to take your clients’ training – and life – to a whole new level. Explore how you can anchor their success by facilitating a sustainable transformation for them on all levels.

Change lives, not just bodies

Explore modalities such as Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP), holistic nutrition, meditation, breath-work, yoga, movement therapy, massage and many more. Also, lesser-known techniques within the trade can increase your ability to be more effective. By combining different techniques and integrating them into a custom-designed plan for your client you will develop brand-new approaches and establish a unique reputation. Clients always prefer to go to the source and teacher of an approach to health and wellness rather than a student – that could be you!


Offer client-centred customised solutions

Client-centric customised solutions have proven to be far more effective than working with standardised programs, especially when addressing chronic issues. Set yourself apart by offering tangible, achievable and accessible solutions to the most pressing problems each of your clients presents. Remember, you can’t be everything for everyone. Position yourself as an expert that draws from a unique framework to deliver a solution customised to each specific client.


Become the go-to guru for a specific problem area

Focus on solving a persisting problem affecting a large enough part of the population to sustain your practice. This means finding and concentrating on a niche and becoming the guru, expert, specialist and the ‘go-to’ person for anyone seeking a solution to their problem in your area of expertise.

Take a moment and think about who you would go to for a specific problem. What makes this person seem to be the best bet – it’s probably because they have built their reputation as a problem solver.

A common pitfall that many trainers face is they tend to define themselves too broadly. By being too unspecific in work and communication our positioning also becomes diluted. Maybe our fear is that we might lose clients. Going deeper into a specific area of focus and targeting more precisely might appear counter-intuitive but in reality the exact opposite happens – you become a client magnet.

Make your clients a value-based offer

Developing sustainable income also means trading in the money-for-time model for a value-based offer. This requires finding out what it is worth to someone to have a specific outcome: a result that means the world to them, that rocks their boat, that offers a real personal transformation.

If you had a chronic debilitating back problem for years that prevented you from leading the life you desired, would you not invest any amount of money to correct that? If your self-confidence was so compromised that it paralysed your ability to be in a relationship, would you not do whatever it takes if you could rely on the outcome? The greater the level of suffering the higher the desire for change.

We have all experienced that defining moment when something shifted for use on a monumental level and after that nothing was ever the same again. These are the experiences people seek, so rather than charging by the hour offer a value-based service. Maybe offer a package, possibly a series, perhaps an intensive workshop, but most importantly, offer an outcome. An outcome has a clearly defined value. This will allow you to get out of competition-based price and allow you to price your offerings based on the value = outcome scenario.

Deliver life-time value through a portfolio of offerings

Start thinking in terms of the lifetime value for your clients. Once they have reached their initial goal they will become hungry for more and you can be there to take them to the next level. Think about what you can offer as their next steps to make this happen.

If you address a particular client profile you will naturally develop a strong sensitivity to their specific needs. This will allow you to expand your reach significantly and deliver your expertise using other platforms in addition to your one-on-one personal sessions. You will be able to move outside of your regional reach by doing workshops, public events and a whole suite of online products ranging from DVD courses through e-books to webinars and online coaching programs, as well as promoting worthy products and earning commissions or referral fees. This strategy will multiply your earnings significantly for the same amount of effort.


Now I would like to invite you to write down the five specific problem areas you have frequently encountered in your practice or environment for which you believe you have (or could develop) a better solution than anyone else has been offering.

Take this first step to map out a course of action for yourself. Get off the time-for-money treadmill and establish a growth plan for your career and your fitness business.



Nicolay Kriedler

Nicolay Kreidler is a business owner, coach and consultant in the health and wellness industry. He specialises in business development and marketing for individuals and small businesses. He has developed several successful businesses in the health and wellness space and works internationally with numerous well-known businesses and individuals. His background and extensive experience lies in personal development and the spa, wellness and hospitality industry. For more information, visit



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